The Star Early Edition
Tragic truth must be shared
LAST week we carried the horrible story of a farmer accused of raping a domestic worker and forcing her to engage in bestiality. Earlier in the week there was the sentencing of Willem Oosthuizen and Theo Jackson, two farmers who shoved a black man in a coffin and threatened to set it alight.
We’ve recently had the story of the “House of Horrors”, referring to the court case in which a Springs couple face an array of charges of neglecting and abusing their children over many years, and last week, the face of Kobus Koekemoer, the stepfather who stands accused of the abuse and death of a three-year-old girl called Poppie, stared out at readers.
Why, some readers have asked, do we do this? Is there not “better” news we can publish?
We appreciate that stories like these are upsetting, and we apologise if anyone feels offended.
But the sad reality is that for all the good people there are in our communities, there are bad people in our midst as well.
This is borne out by the crime statistics, and we know it from our own and others’ shared experiences.
Behind closed doors in our neighbourhoods, there are rapists and abusers; down the road, someone may be held up and robbed; and murder continues to drive fear into our hearts.
There are people whose criminal and antisocial actions are driven by their hate for others based on race or other differences, and there are those who don’t care about the law and the rights of others because of greed.
And then there are those whose emotional intelligence is so low that they neglect, abuse and even beat helpless children to death.
It is tragic, but it is true, and to close our eyes to it, no matter how upsetting, is wrong.
For this reason we will continue to publish stories which we believe are important talking points in and around our city, and hope that by so doing we grow awareness, and help in some small way to prevent crime.